This year, nearly 1.7 million new cases of cancer are expected to be diagnosed. Thanks to significant medical advances, prevention and healthier lifestyles, survival rates continue to improve.

Smart Business turned to Philip DiSaia, M.D., medical director, MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute at Long Beach Memorial and world leader and researcher in gynecologic oncology, and Amanda Termuhlen, M.D., medical director, Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center at Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach, the region’s renowned pediatric cancer facility.

Does prevention really work?

A substantial proportion of cancers can be prevented. Not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight and diet, and plenty of exercise help reduce risks. Regular screening tests that allow detection and removal of precancerous growths can help prevent many cancers. Pap smears help detect cervical cancer, colonoscopies can identify colon cancer, PSAs may determine the likelihood and treatment of prostate cancer, and breast self-exams and mammograms reduce mortality for breast cancer.

What are some advances available locally?

Todd Cancer Institute and Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center are dedicated to early diagnosis, research, treatment and education of patients with cancer or serious blood disorders. At interdisciplinary treatment planning conferences, specialists review new and difficult cases, developing treatment plans suited to patient needs. Our world-renowned Leavey Radiation Oncology Center achieves break-through results with the most advanced technologies and therapies. Patients can access more than 100 cancer research protocols.

At the forefront of adult cancer management are our gynecologic, thoracic, breast, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, radiation oncology, genetic counseling and robotic surgery. We were one of the first centers to make individualized therapy and targeted treatment a clinical reality.

Is there progress for childhood cancers?

Prior to the 1970s, only half of children with cancer survived beyond five years following diagnosis. Today that number is 80 percent, thanks to better cancer drugs, treatment, research and access to clinical trials. Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center supports advanced diagnostic tools and treatments with comprehensive psychosocial services and a multi-disciplinary care team that follows every patient from admission through their hospital stay and follow-up in outpatient settings. New research efforts offers patients access to leading therapies.

What can be expected in the future?

Vaccines like those to prevent cervical cancer may be effective in other cancers. Emerging treatment technologies, techniques and drug discoveries more accurately treat cancer, and with fewer side effects. Myriad cancer therapies and treatment in varying stages of development continue to unveil more about cancer cell biology and new treatments.

New pharmaceuticals may better kill tumors by cutting off their blood supply. There is hope therapeutic vaccines will help activate a patient’s immune system. Gene sequencing seeking specific DNA mutations with different types of cancers may lead to new treatments. Physicians are researching family history and DNA to better predict cancer risk. Screenings for higher risk patients can help diagnose cancer at earlier stages. Doctors are customizing treatments and choosing the most effective outcomes.

How can businesses help?

Encourage employees to access cancer screenings. Offer wellness, nutrition and exercise programs. Partner with hospitals for on-site education. Memorialcare.org provides online risk assessments, tools and information on prevention, screenings, diagnosis and treatments.

MemorialCare Health System, a not-for profit, integrated delivery system, includes six top hospitals — Long Beach Memorial, Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach, Community Hospital Long Beach, Orange Coast Memorial, and Saddleback Memorial in Laguna Hills and San Clemente; medical groups — MemorialCare Medical Group and Memorial Prompt Care; the Independent Practice Association (IPA) Greater Newport Physicians; retail health; ambulatory surgery centers; and numerous outpatient facilities across the Southland.

Philip DiSaia, M.D., is medical director at MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute, Long Beach Memorial.

Amanda Termuhlen, M.D, is medical director at Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center, Miller Children’s Hospital.

Insights Health Care is brought to you by MemorialCare Health System

 

 

 

 

Published in Los Angeles

This year 1.5 million Americans will be diagnosed with cancer. And the lifetime probability of an invasive cancer is 44 percent for men and 38 percent for women. Thanks to significant advances and as well as a greater emphasis on preventive measures and healthier lifestyles, cancer diagnoses and deaths are declining.

To learn more, Smart Business spoke to Philip DiSaia, M.D., medical director, Todd Cancer Institute at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center and world renowned leader and researcher in gynecologic oncology; and Amanda Termuhlen, M.D., medical director of Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center at Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach, the region’s renowned pediatric cancer facility.

What causes cancer?

While causes are unknown, research helps us identify risks and cures. Since different cancers have different risk factors, understanding them helps with prevention. Controlling some risk factors — like not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight and diet, and getting plenty of exercise — helps reduce your risk of cancer. Other risk factors, such as age, ethnicity, family history and inherited genes, cannot be changed. Genetic counseling offered through Long Beach Memorial helps patients determine their risk for diseases that may be inherited, including colon, uterine, breast and ovarian cancer. Families with a higher than expected number of cancer cases can benefit from our Hereditary Cancer Risk Assessment consultation.

Why are the rates declining?

We are witnessing more effective diagnosis and treatment of major cancers. Screenings such as pap smears to detect cervical cancer, colonoscopies to identify colon cancer and PSA tests to determine the likelihood and treatment of prostate cancer are examples.  Laws restricting smoking and education on its associated risks are stemming lung cancer. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can reduce onset of cancer. Vaccines like those to prevent cervical cancer in women may be effective in other cancers as well. Emerging treatment technologies, techniques and drug discoveries continue to help us to more accurately treat cancer with fewer side effects.

Can we access these advances locally?

Todd Cancer Institute and Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center are dedicated to early diagnosis, research and treatment as well as education of patients with cancer or serious blood disorders. Through interdisciplinary treatment planning conferences, specialists review new or difficult cases and develop treatment plans suited to each patient’s specific needs. Our world renowned Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Radiation Oncology Center consistently achieves breakthrough results, using the most advanced technologies and therapies. In addition, cancer patients can access more than 100 ongoing cancer research protocols.

Working at the forefront of adult cancer management are our divisions of gynecologic, thoracic, breast, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, radiation oncology, genetic counseling services and robotic surgery. We were one of the first cancer programs to make individualized cancer therapy and targeted treatment a clinical reality.

What is the progress on childhood cancers?

Children that are between infancy and age 15 represent more than 10,000 new cases of cancers diagnosed each year. Prior to the 1970s, only half of children with cancer survived beyond five years following diagnosis. Today, that number improved to 80 percent, thanks to better cancer drugs, treatment, research and access to clinical trials. At Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center, we support advanced diagnostic tools and treatments with comprehensive psychosocial services and a multi-disciplinary care team that follows every cancer patient or blood disorder patient from the time of admission, through their hospital stay, and throughout their follow-up care in outpatient settings. And the integration of new research efforts into treatment plans allows our patients access to leading therapies.

What can we expect in the future?

Scores of cancer therapies and treatments are in varying stages of development as researchers continue to learn more about cancer cell biology and new treatments.  Therapeutic vaccines hope to harness a patient’s immune system. Pharmaceuticals are being created to better kill tumors by cutting off their blood supply.  Gene sequencing looks for specific DNA mutations that occur with different types of cancers. The ability to identify those mutations may lead to new treatments. Physicians are now using the knowledge gained by research to look at an individual’s family history and DNA to predict cancer risk. Personalized screening for those at higher risk will help detect cancer at its earliest signs. Doctors will be better able to customize treatment, choosing the most effective treatment and avoiding those that will not work.

How can employers help?

Employers can encourage their work force to take advantage of cancer screenings. Wellness programs can be as simple as ensuring worksite eating places and vending machines offer healthy food, sharing exercise tips and providing pedometers and wellness incentives. Businesses can partner with our cancer centers, which offer onsite education. Our memorialcare.org website provides a wealth of information on cancer prevention, screenings, diagnosis and treatments.

Philip DiSaia, M.D., is the medical director of the Todd Cancer Institute at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center. Amanda Termuhlen, M.D. is the medical director of Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center at Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach. The not-for-profit MemorialCare Health System includes Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach, Community Hospital Long Beach, Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center in Fountain Valley and Saddleback Memorial Medical Center in Laguna Hills and San Clemente. For additional information on excellence in health care, please visit memorialcare.org.

Published in Los Angeles

For many Americans, cancer is the most feared diagnosis. Yet, thanks to significant advances and preventive measures, the numbers of cancers are declining.

To learn more about treatments and prevention, Smart Business spoke to Jack Jacoub, M.D., hematologist/oncologist and medical director, thoracic oncology program at Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center in Fountain Valley, and Moses Kim, M.D., Ph.D., urologist and specialist in robotic cancer surgery at Saddleback Memorial Medical Center in Laguna Hills and San Clemente.

What causes cancer?

While causes are unknown, research is helping identify causes and cures. Since different cancers have different risk factors, understanding these risk factors can help in prevention. Fortunately, some risk factors — like not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight and diet, and getting plenty of exercise — help reduce your risk of cancer.

Other risk factors — age, ethnicity, family history and inherited genes — cannot be changed. Genetic counseling services help patients determine their risk for diseases that can be inherited, including colon, uterine, breast and ovarian cancer.

Any family with higher than expected numbers of cancer cases may benefit from our Hereditary Cancer Risk Assessment consultation.

Why are the rates declining?

Screenings such as pap smears to detect cervical cancer, colonoscopies to identify colon cancer and PSA tests to determine the likelihood and treatment of prostate cancer are examples. Laws that restrict smoking and education on its associated risks are stemming lung cancer. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can reduce onset of cancer.

Vaccines like those used to prevent cervical cancer in women may be effective in other cancers as well. Emerging treatment technologies, techniques and drug discoveries continue to help us more accurately treat cancer, and with fewer side effects.

Can we access these advances locally?

The MemorialCare Cancer Institutes at Orange Coast Memorial and Saddleback Memorial Medical Centers offer the most advanced and latest technologies, therapies and treatments in Orange County and have achieved national accreditation by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer as comprehensive community cancer programs. These range from genetic counseling and comprehensive screenings and diagnostic services to the most sophisticated radiation oncology programs — and include the region’s only hospital-sited CyberKnife robotic radiosurgery system and advanced radiation oncology treatment centers.

Our MemorialCare Breast Centers screen more patients for breast cancer than any other program in the county; and our physicians also are highly regarded specialists in lung, prostate, brain, spine and other cancers. We are dedicated to early diagnosis, research, treatment and education of patients with cancer or serious blood disorders.  Cancer patients have access to ongoing cancer research protocols and a wide variety of support services. Through the interdisciplinary treatment planning conferences, specialists review new or difficult cases and can develop treatment plans suited to each patient’s specific needs.

What can we expect in the future?

Myriad cancer therapies and treatments are in varying stages of development as researchers continue to learn more about cancer cell biology and new treatment options.

Pharmaceuticals are being created to better kill tumors by cutting off their blood supply. There is hope that therapeutic vaccines might help harness a patient’s immune system. Gene sequencing looks for specific DNA mutations that occur with different types of cancers. The ability to identify those mutations may lead to new treatments.  Physicians are beginning to use knowledge gained by research to look at an individual’s family history DNA to predict cancer risk. Personalized screening for those at higher risk will help catch cancer at its earliest signs.

Doctors will be better able to customize treatment, choosing the most effective treatment and avoiding those that will not work.

How can employers help?

Encourage your work force to take advantage of cancer screenings. Initiate wellness programs.  These can be as simple as ensuring worksite eating places and vending machines offer healthy food, offering exercise tips and providing pedometers to use during breaks and mealtimes.

Partner with your local hospital cancer center to offer onsite education. Our memorialcare.org website provides online risk assessments and tools as well as a wealth of information on cancer prevention, screenings, diagnosis and treatments.

Jack Jacoub, M.D., is a hematologist/oncologist and medical director, thoracic oncology program at Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center. Moses Kim, M.D., Ph.D., is a urologist and specialist in robotic cancer surgery at Saddleback Memorial Medical Center. The not-for-profit MemorialCare Health System includes Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach, Community Hospital Long Beach, Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center in Fountain Valley and Saddleback Memorial Medical Center in Laguna Hills and San Clemente. For additional information on excellence in health care, please visit memorialcare.org.

Published in Los Angeles